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Friday 22nd January

The Friday email: 22 January 2021

Higher education: Covid crisis, Augar review and TEF report

This week UCU called for university teaching to remain online for the rest of the academic year to protect the well-being of staff, students and the community and we will continue to support branches that ballot for strike action in the event of our members being forced to return to unsafe workplaces. More here.

UCU also responded to the publication of both the government's interim response to the Augar review of post-18 education and funding and the independent review of the Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF). The union said the Augar Review response was a missed opportunity to change the current, toxic higher education funding system and tackle the weaknesses that have been exposed by the current pandemic. On TEF, UCU said that with staff facing burnout and increased stress levels now was not the time to increase their administrative workloads with dubious metrics and box-ticking exercises. Read more here.

Further education: white paper and Wales education workforce survey

UCU has called the Department of Education's white paper 'skills for jobs: lifelong learning for opportunity and growth', a missed an opportunity to end FE's failed incorporation experiment, bring colleges back under public control, fund the sector properly and pay staff fairly. Read more here.

The Welsh government, FE trade unions, Colleges Wales and the Education Workforce Council invite members working in further education in Wales to take part in this national education workforce survey for Wales.

Holocaust Memorial Day 2021: be the light in the darkness

Each year on 27 January, Holocaust Memorial Day commemorates the millions of Jewish people murdered during the Holocaust, as well as other victims of Nazi persecution and subsequent genocides. This year, the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust is also organising a national online memorial ceremony at 7pm; we encourage UCU members to attend this and join those across the country in lighting a candle at 8pm to commemorate those killed in the Holocaust. 

Register here for the national digital memorial event at 7pm on 27th January.

Saving lives at work: organising day school, 27 January

On Wednesday 27 January we're holding an online organising day school to discuss the fight for safe workplaces and hear from activists who have been involved in health and safety campaigns during the pandemic. For more details and to register click here.

Last updated: 22 January 2021